Jewelry, Gems, & Minerals/Script


What professional puts inscriptions on watches and other metal items? Could they work on stainless steel?

James, the person is an engraver.  Trophy shops and similar use machines to do the engraving. The inscription is cut with an engraving stylus (a point designed to cut certain materials).  The machine may be hand operated or use an electric motor to turn a rotating stylus, similar to a drill use by a dentist. The point may be hard metal or a hard gemstone, generally diamond.

Fancier engraving and the best is done by a "hand engraver", a rare skilled craftsman and not easy to find.  The hand engraver uses metal tools called "gravers" to do the work and all is executed by hand.  In some cases the hand e3ngraver may use a pneumatic (air powered) tool to help do the work cleanly and may use carbide cutting tips on the tools. Still, when hand done, each is done with the character of the worker even if according to fonts in use for more than several hundred years.

Ask jewelers if they can refer you to a hand engraver and have them show you samples of machine engraving they do. Your choice is what sort of engraving to have done. Generally only the better jewelers will use hand engraving because it is truly skilled work and much more costly than machine work.

Mass production as for trophy plaques is done by a computer controlled machine with little human involvement.

Best wishes in finding what you need, James.  God Bless and Peace.  Thomas.

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Have a question about jewelry repair or working with precious metal jewelry and gemstones? For many years up to December 31, 2010, I was a working professional bench jeweler, involved everyday with setting stones in mountings, designing and making jewelry, repairing and limited custom manufacture. If you work with jewelry as a hobby or as a profession, I might be able to help. I deal with the retail business, not mass production. Ask privately if you wish. See the box for that: It keeps your question between us. Please DO NOT ask MAKER'S MARKS, but metal quality marks are fine to ask. Please DO NOT ask diamond prices. See a gemologist for that.


I have extensive experience in design, service and making of jewelry. I deal mostly with precious metals and gemstones but work with many materials as needed and usable to create an artistic design. My experience also includes freelance photography and photographer of jewelry and similar items for a former employer and individuals. Design of custom items requires reading the desires of the client and being clear on what can be done within that framework...then fulfilling the transition of idea to reality. Effective communications is essential in a working designer/producer and customer relationship.

Education is English/Physics! Started in human resources, to advertising, to, what a road. I have had formal training in jewelry work and many shared experiences with top grade jewelers. We just never know were we will go or be. Follow your best, your dreams, with some discretion! Don't let the work tear up your body along the way as it has mine.

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